Just forget the words and sing along

Friday, February 29, 2008

Little Bits of Movie News

Wow, lots of cool stuff was announced while I was out goofing around.

First up, Freddie Highmore is going to be doing the voice of AstroBoy. Highmore is the little British boy who was Charlie in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and is currently on the big screen in The Spiderwick Chronicles.

AstroBoy is being turned into a computer-animated film by the folks at Imagi Studios. Imagi's first film was last year's CGI Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. AstroBoy is begin directed by David Bowers, a long-time DreamWorks and Aardman storyboard artist who made his directorial debut with Flushed Away. It's due out in '09

Family Guy is getting a spin-off.

Peter Griffin's mellow, laid back, African American friend Cleveland Brown is getting his own show. Cleveland is being developed by Family Guy creator Seth McFarlane, Family Guy writer/producer and voice of Cleveland Mike Henry, and former Simpsons writer and current American Dad! showrunner Rich Appel.

No word yet on when Cleveland will be hitting the airwaves.

And it looks like the straight-to-video DC Comics animated film Teen Titans: The Judas Contract is danger.

At a recent comic book convention, Teen Titans: The Judas Contract writer and veteran comic book writer Marv Wolfman revealed that Warner Brothers is considering pulling the plug on the project, because they think that Teen Titans doesn't have a big enough fan base to warrant a straight-to-DVD film.

For those who don't know, in the 1980s, Teen Titans grew to be DC's answer to X-Men, a group of young superheroes dealing with all kinds of teen angst. Their leader was Nightwing, who was Robin all grown up and on his own.

The Judas Contract is considered one of their best storylines. The Titans are betrayed by one of their own to the mercenary Deathstroke, who begins to destroy the Titans one by one. It was greatly watered down and served as the inspiration for the season 2 story arc of the recent Teen Titans animated series.

Mark Cappis's Day Off

I'm playing hookey today!

Well, I guess it's not really hookey when you go through all the proper channels and book the day off a month ago.

But the way I figured it, if you're going to cut loose and go nuts, why not on February 29...a day so rare and special that it only comes around once every four years?

I threw it out there on my blog a couple of days ago as to whether I should go see the Royal Alberta Museum or the Telus World of Science - Edmonton. And today I decided....

The Royal Alberta Museum!

Why? Well, that was always kind of my original plan, and let's face, the Museum needs the attendance so the government will finally get off their duffs and start their expansion.

The gross simplification of the issue: back in 2005, when the Queen was visiting the province for the centennial, and she proclaimed the Provincial Museum of Alberta to be the Royal Alberta Museum, Premier Ralph Klein figured that a great centennial project would be to finally build a much-needed expansion to the museum and truly turn it into a world-class facility. The cost? $200 million.

Flash-forward about a year and a half. Klein retired and Ed Stelmach came to power. Because construction costs are so huge in Alberta, the final expansion plans came in at more than $200 million. I forget the exact number, but I think a fair guess is between $300 and $400 million. (That's just a guess...feel free to correct me if you know the correct number.)

So, the Museum went to the government in early 2007, asking for more money. Stelmach said, "NO!! $200 million is all you're getting! Now, you go back to that drawing board, and come back with a $200 million plan!"

In the original plan, the Royal Alberta Museum was to be closed by now, as construction was going full-bore on the renovations. But, it's now stuck in permanent limbo, as construction costs keep going up and up and up and $200 million won't buy that much anymore.

So I figure the Museum needs all the help it can get.

and besides, as my best friend pointed out, I should save the Telus World of Science for June, because that's when they're bringing in the world-famous and controversial Body Worlds.

Woo! Spending a day at a museum. When I cut loose and go nuts, I really go nuts.

But then, as Tom Hanks's character in Saving Private Ryan said, there are some things I keep just for me.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

A Night at Which Museum?

I've got a couple of days off coming to me, and there are two places that I want to check out. I haven't been to either one in a while, so I'm seeking some input.

On the one hand, we've got the Royal Alberta Museum. Last time I was there, it was still the Provincial Museum of Alberta. Granted, museums don't change that much, and looking at the website, they don't really have any really interesting rotating displays this month. But still, it'd be nice to check it out before they get to those renovations. IF they ever get to those renovations. Stupid government cutting funding...grumble grumble.

On the other hand, we've got the Telus World of Science - Edmonton. That one I haven't been to since it was called the Edmonton Space and Science Centre. That's right, I missed the Odyssium period. Last time I was there was 11 years ago. I remember seeing this IMAX documentary called Special Effects, all about making special effects. It's big selling point was that this documentary came out shortly before Star Wars: Special Edition, so a big focus of the film is doing the FX for the special editions. They even hauled the old models out of storage and re-created the opening shot of Star Wars for IMAX.

Ya gotta remember...this was 1997. They weren't showing regular movies in IMAX yet, so seeing a scene from Star Wars in IMAX was a really, really big deal. No pun intended.

That, and R2-D2 and C-3P0 have an amusing cameo at the end.

So, on the one hand, we have a royal museum that I haven't been to in a while, and probably has more interesting stuff for me to photograph with my digital camera.

On the other hand, we've got a science centre that I haven't been to in a REALLY LONG while with IMAX movies.

That's why I'm throwing it out there to you! If you've got an opinion to help me decide, let me know in the comments down below, or send me note with your thoughts.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

New DVD Day!

I love Tuesday and the new DVDs it brings! Got lots of notable releases out today.

First up, the one most anticipated by the geeks in the house, is Justice League: The New Frontier. Based on the award-winning graphic novel of the same name by Darwyn Cooke, Justice League: The New Frontier re-imagines the origins of the Justice League by plopping them down into the real world of the politics and the policies of 1950s America. I went down to the library and read the book when this project was first announced, and it's a pretty good read.

This one stars the voices of Kyle McLaughlin as Superman, Lucy Lawless as Wonder Woman, Neil Patrick Harris as the Flash, Jeremy Sisto as Batman, and David Boreanaz as Green Lantern.

For bonus features, you get a documentary about the history of the Justice League, a running commentary by diretor Bruce Timm and writer Darwyn Cooke, and a preview of the next straight-to-DVD DC comics animated film, Batman: Gothan Knight. If you spring for the 2-disc special edition, the on disc 2 you get a documentary about the history and evolution of super-villains, an interview with Cooke about the creation of the original graphic novel, and Timm presents his 3 favourite episodes of Justice League Unlimited.

For people who like bloody historical epics and performance-capture films, we've got Beowulf out today. It's available in both a regular version and an "unrated director's cut."

And for the Wes Anderson junkies in the house, Anderson's latest The Darjeeling Limited hits DVD today. The latest film from the director of The Royal Tennenbaums and The Life Aquatic follows three brothers, played by Owen Wilson, Adrian Brody, and Jason Schwartzman, as they travel across India, re-connecting with each other and finding themselves. For bonus materials, you get a behind-the-scenes featurette, and the prequel short film Hotel Chevalier, which was released through iTunes and stars Natalie Portman. You true Wes Anderson fans may want to save your money for the fully-loaded Criterion edition, which is due out in the fall.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Oscar Reflections

Man, I can't believe I didn't do my annual Oscar picks at my official website. Actually, I do believe I didn't do it. I thought about doing it, but in the end, I just went, "Meh."

Anyway, watched the big show last night. Thought it was kind of bland this year. However, I do have a few things I want to say.

- Ratatouille won Best Animated Film. No surprise there, as Brad Bird is GOD'S GIFT TO FILMMAKING, in my opinion. I can't believe he told his guidance councillor story in his speech. He tells that tale in every interview he does. Can't fault him, though, cuz it's a good story. And he remembered to thank Jan Pinkava, which I thought was classy.

- The Golden Compass beat Transformers for Best Visual Effects. Optimus Prime defeated by Coca Cola polar bears. Biggest upset of the night.

- Seeing the songs from Enchanted performed live once again makes me sad that I missed that one in the theatres. I'm hitting the city this weekend...maybe it's still playing in the dollar theatres.

- Sweetest moment of the night: when host Jon Stewart brought Marketa Irglova, co-winner of the Best Original Song Oscar, back out to say her thank-yous, cuz her song-writing partner hogged the mic and she didn't get a chance to say hers. Irglova and her mic-hogging partner, Glen Hansard, won for the song Falling Slowly from Once.

- Favourite joke of the night: "Someone just won their Oscar pool based on a lucky guess." - Stewart, commenting on The Bourne Ultimatum winning Best Sound Mixing.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Latest Targ's Up!

After last week's impromptu long weekend, I got on my butt and recorded a podcast this week!

Today, I've got Episode 86: Request Show #3. I play your songs and tell little tales of why I like you.

Listen here!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Must Be Thursday

Wow. I've got some crazy news and some cool news that I just have to share with the world.

First, the crazy news. The movie geek community is scratching their heads over this one. Hasbro Toys really wants to get into making movies, what with the success of the live-action Transformers and the live-action G.I. Joe now filming. Today, it was announced that Hasbro just signed a deal with Universal Studios. Universal gets to make a maximum of four films based on...Hasbro's board games.

Hasbro makes some of the biggest board games on the market, like Twister, Hungry Hungry Hippos, Battleship, Candyland, Guess Who?, Operation, Risk, Clue...pretty much every board game going.

And the thing is, directors are actually interested! Shortly after this, it was announced that Michael Bay is actually very interested in making a movie based on...the Ouiji Board. Yes, Hasbro holds the copywright on the Ouiji Board. It's interesting to note that the Ouiji Board inspired a series of slasher films in the late-1980s/early-1990s called Witchboard in which the board unleashed murderous demons. And since Michael Bay owns a company called Platinum Dunes, which is dedicated to re-making old slasher films (Platinum Dunes made that Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake), I think we know where we're going with this one.

Even more shocking, Ridley Scott, director of good movies like Gladiator, Black Hawk Down and the recent American Gangster, is really keen on making the movie version of Monopoly. Scott figures he can make Monopoly into "a comedic thriller about big business."

Yes, Ridley Scott's Monopoly. I can see the trailers now. "The Battle for Boardwalk Begins. Summer 2009. Starring Russel Crowe as the race car."

And now the cool news, because I love all things Olympics.

Today, it was announced that Singapore will be hosting the world's first Youth Olympics.

The Youth Olympics are a new international sporting event being set by the International Olympic Committee. It's going to be on a smaller-scale than the Olympics, and only be open to atheletes between the ages of 14 and 18. The purpose of the games is to promote sport among the youth...get them off the couch and outside playing.

The first Summer Youth Olympics are already scheduled for 2010. This is the first international sporting competition for Singapore.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Happy Christmas! Format War is Over!

Got some very happy news today for those who want to buy a next generation DVD player, but were having trouble deciding between HD-DVD or Blu-Ray. Your decision just got a whole lot simpler.

The format war is finally over. The winner is...Blu-Ray!

At a press conference in Tokyo earlier this morning, Toshiba conceded defeat and announced that they'd be pulling the plug on HD-DVD.

And thus, a year-and-a-half chapter in the home theatre saga came to an end.

For those who want a re-cap, it's like this. The next generation of DVD was unleased upon us in the summer of 2006. New hardware, new software, it all meant much higher picture and sound quality.

But see, here's where they screwed up. They were smart with DVD. Wanting to avoid the ol' "Beta vs. VHS" format war, all the big electronics companies sat down and came up with a unified format for DVD. 1 player, 1 choice, 1 industry standard. Much nicer for all of us. But with the next generation, I guess they started looking at "Beta vs. VHS" as "the good old days," and decided to have a format war. In one corner, we had Toshiba with HD-DVD, and in the other, it was Sony with Blu-Ray.

Battle lines were drawn! Movie studios started choosing which format they'd back. 20th Century Fox and Disney went Blu-Ray. Universal and Paramount went HD-DVD. Warner Brothers decided to stay neutal and support both.

But then, two things happened in the past month that they say dealt the decisive blow. Warner Brothers finally decided to abandon their neutral stance and side with Blu-Ray. And Wal-Mart decided that they would start carrying only Blu-Ray.

And now comes the next task: convincing the average bloke on the street that it's time to give up their DVD player and upgrade to Blu-Ray.

And yes, your old DVDs can play on Blu-Ray players.

Monday, February 18, 2008

The Story of Family Day

So, here it is, once again, Family Day in the province of Alberta. This little made-in-Alberta holiday is being celebrated for the 18th year. Just think! Albertans born 18 years ago have now been literally raised with Family Day. And, as I like to do every year on this day, I like to come here on my blog and remind people exactly why we celebrate Family Day.

It has long been argued that Canada needs a statutory holiday in February. It's believed that the break between New Years and Easter is far too long, and we need a long weekend in there to help get rid of what former Edmonton radio personality Bill Matheson referred to as "the February Blahs." Sadly, though, it's always been considered a low priority for the federal government.

But, thanks to Alberta, and it's "screw Ottawa! Let's do it oursevles," attitude, former Premier Don Getty decided to do something about it. For those who don't remember, Getty was the premier sandwiched between Peter Lougheed and Ralph Klein...he's the George Lazenby of Alberta politics.

One of Getty's initiatives was to finally bring about a February holiday. the day chosen for this day was the third Monday in February. It's always been believed that that day was chosen because it's the same as the American holiday of President's Day. And, seeing as to how there's a lot of oil money in Alberta, all those American oil men in their offices in Calgary finally wanted to have President's Day off. So...third Monday in February.

But now, what do we call this holiday? What is our reason for celebrating? Well, around this time, Getty's son was busted for dealing cocaine, and tossed into prison. In a speech given at that time, Getty lamented that he never spent enough time with his family, and that if only people spent a little more time with their families, perhaps sons wouldn't get thrown into prison.

A few days later, it was announced that the holiday would be Family Day. And the joke began about how Getty wanted a day off to go visit his son in prison. I don't remember if it was ever officially announced that the Getty coke bust was a direct cause of the declaration of Family Day, but Wikipedia says it was.

However, what I do remember was the Family Day was actually quite controversial in its first few years. People were all like, "Family Day? Yeesh, that sounds like a made-up holiday if there ever was one." Those hard-workin' Albertans wanted to spend another day at work. Besides, since this is just a provincial holiday and not a nationwide one, this meant that a federal holiday had to be sacraficed. So long, August long weekend, which is now no longer recognized in Alberta!

Actually, I'm being melodramatic. How it works is that companies can choose to recognize either Family Day or the August Long Weekend as the paid holiday. For example, the federal government has chosen to recognize the August Long Weekend. That's why you'll find federal institutions, like the post office, open today. Or, if you're lucky, you'll work for a real cool company like mine, which recognizes both days as paid holidays. But I digress.

All I remember is that animosity towards Family Day was so strong in the beginning, that one of Ralph Klein's very first election promises was to abolish Family Day. But then, by the time Klein came to power, Family Day had been celebrated for around 5 years or so, and it was firmly entrenched in the Alberta culture. Besides, who wants to be known as a premier who abolishes holidays?

And that's why we celebrate Family Day. Because Alberta said so.

Actually, the concept of a February holiday is starting to catch on. Saskwatchewan celebrated its first Family Day last year. Ontario celebrates its first Family Day this year. Manitoba is also recognizing its first "third Monday in February" holiday this year, but they don't call it Family Day. They decided to conduct a province wide poll to figure out what the holiday should be called. So, today in Manitoba, they're celebrating the first Louis Riel Day.

But no matter where you are in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, or Ontario, I hope you raise a glass and toast Don Getty and his coke dealing son for giving us this day.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

No Targ This Week

So. No new episode of The Targ this week.

It's like this. My car is leaking oil and it's in the shop getting fixed. The prospect of no car for the long weekend and again being on foot for the next couple of days was getting me down. Plus, there's a bunch of work-related stuff going on right now that I won't get into here that's getting me all stressed out. Needless to say, I was being left with that "the walls are closing in on me" feeling.

So I did what I did when I was in college and starting to feel that way. I phoned home and begged my parents to come get me.

I'm home in Entwistle now, sipping tea and feeling much, much, better. The downside is, no episode of The Targ this week, because all my recording equipment is back in Athabasca. The upside is I still plan to make the next one a request show, so you've got another week to get your requests in. E-mail those to requests@chaosinabox.com.

I'll be back with an all new episode next week! But please, help yourself to a rerun.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

"I Thought You Were a Teacher." "Part time."

Here it is, the long-awaited first look at Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.

Looking good. May 22.

To Boldly...Wait Longer

The Star Trek world is reeling today with the announcement that we've got to wait longer for the new Star Trek film. It was origianlly slated to come out Christmas Day 2008. It has now been pushed back to May 8, 2009.

The official word from Paramount Pictures for the move is that it has massive earning potential, and therefore is better suited to be summer blockbuster.

The unoffical word is that director J.J. Abrams has been itching to do re-shoots because, now that actors are speaking the dialogue out loud, it sounds lame. And he was prevented from doing re-shoots because of the writer's strike, cuz it would have meant re-writing the script. But now that the writer's strike is done, he is free and clear to do reshoots.

So, to all my fellow trekkies out there, you can start telling your mom you'll be home for Christmas. Star Trek, now coming in May of 2009. This is the first Star Trek film to be given summer blockbuster status ever since Star Trek V: The Final Frontier.

In other movie news, here's the first picture of Hugh Jackman as Wolverine from the upcoming Wolverine solo film, also due out in 2009:

Everyone's going, "Yup, looks like Wolverine," but I'd like to point out one little nerdy detail.

Look at his claws. They're coming out from the back of his hands! Finally, they got his claws comic-book-accurate. For all the X-Men movies, they changed it so they came out from between his knuckles.

*sigh* And Mom wonders why I'm alone again on Valentine's Day.

I'll be back later today, when they post that trailer for Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.

Monday, February 11, 2008

And Knowing is Half the Battle

One little tiny piece of movie news that slipped out today was that, today, the long-awaited live-action movie version of G.I. Joe started filming.

Wow. Right up there with the live-action Transformers, a live-action G.I. Joe is right up there as something that makes my inner child giggle with glee. It all started with me and my brother playing around in the backyard when we were kids, going, "Wouldn't this be cool?" It evolved into many a moonlit night in the Dagligtale office with my best friend going, "Who should play who?" And now, it's actually happening.

Of course, even though G.I. Joe has been around since the 1960s, the movie will largely be based on G.I Joe: A Real American Hero, which we all grew up with in the 1980s. But, sadly, there have been a few changes. It's felt that, in the current global political climate, "A Real American Hero" will be a tough sell overseas. So it's been changed to G.I.J.O.E., a special multi-national task force. But, some things remain the same. They're still based at a military base in New York state codenamed "The Pit," and their mission is still to defend human freedom against Cobra, a ruthless terrorist organization determined to rule the world.

Stephen Sommers is directing. He's still best known as the director of The Mummy, The Mummy Returns, and Van Helsing. The script was written by Stuart Beattie, who wrote the Oscar-nominated Tom Cruise/Jaimie Foxx thriller Collateral, and he also had a hand in writing the first Pirates of the Carribean film. There's even a rumor going around that Larry Hama, who wrote the G.I. Joe comics back in the 1980s and is pretty much accredited with creating the characters, has been brought in as a consultant. Just like Transformers, it's a joint production between Paramount, DreamWorks, and Hasbro.

But I'm sure you all want to know who our dramatis persona are.

G.I. Joe

Dennis Quaid as Hawk
G.I. Joe's stalwart commanding officer is being played by the veteran character actor of some 25 years worth of films.

Channing Tatum as Duke
The poster boy for G.I. Joe, the man of action who's always on the front line, the man described as "6-foot-2 with eyes of blue," is being played by the virtual unknown Tatum. This is one of his first big roles.

Ray Park as Snake Eyes
Who better to play the Joe's silent ninja commando than Darth Maul?

Rachel Nichols as Scarlett
The Joe's bad-ass special forces operative and the love of Snake Eyes' life if being played by this rising young starlet who was last seen in the thriller P2 but is still best remembered as special agent Rachel Gibson on Alias

Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Heavy Duty
This British-born actor who currently plays Mr. Eko on Lost is the Joe's heavy machine gunner. For those veteran Joe fans who are asking, "Who the heck is Heavy Duty?" it's like this. A few years back, Hasbro actually lost the copyright on the name "Roadblock." So Roadblock was given the new code name Heavy Duty.

Marlon Wayans as Ripcord
The star of so many very bad comedies is playing the Joe's daring airborne trooper.

Said Taghmaoui as Breaker
This French actor is the Joe's communications officer.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Rex
The young actor still best remembered as young Tommy on Third Rock from the Sun is all grown up and playing the Joe's newest recruit. This Joe was created just for the movie, leading me to ask, "Gee, I wonder who's not coming back for the sequel?"

Heroes are only as good as the villains they fight, so here's The Cobra Command Team

Christopher Eccleston as Destro
The ninth Doctor Who is playing the Scottish arms dealer who supplies Cobra with all their high-tech weaponry.

Sienna Miller as the Baroness
This highly-acclaimed indie film queen is Cobra's master of espionage and Destro's main squeeze.

Arnold Vosloo as Zartan
Cobra's master of disguise and leader of his own terrorist group, the Dreadnocks, is being played by Imhotep...the mummy in those Mummy films.

Byung-hun Lee as Storm Shadow
This Korean pop star and martial artist makes his English language debut as Snake Eyes' blood brother and bitter enemy.

The identity of the supreme evil himself, Cobra Commander, is still being kept a closely guarded secret.

And of course, we'll all be running out to the theatres to see it on August 7, 2009.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Latest Targ's Up!

It's still a chilly weekend out there, so why not settle in around the computer and listen to this week's episode of U62: The Targ?

That's right, I've got this week's episode of The Targ up! This week, I bring you Episode 85: The Moon Maiden. This time around, I wax poetic about the moon, I tell you about my picture in the Athabasca Country Tourist Guide, and read for you the best news story I've ever written.

Go give it a listen!

And just a head's up. I figure that next week I want to do another request show. So, as always, if there's some MP3 you're dying to hear on the podcast, e-mail that sucker to requests@chaosinabox.com.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Voice Artist News

Well, as we all know by now, the brand new Knight Rider TV movie is going to be hitting the airwaves on February 17th. It's actually a pilot for a new TV show, and it will become a TV show if the ratings are good enough. However, with just barely a week before it airs, they've done some re-casting on the voice of KITT.

As we all know, Will Arnet, still best known as GOB [jobe] Bluth on Arrested Development, was to be the voice of KITT. But get this. Arnet also narrates ads for General Motors. And since the new KITT is a Ford, GM said it was a breach of their contract.

So, then, who's the new voice of KITT?

Val Kilmer!

That's right, KITT is now voiced by Batman, Madmartigan, Jim Morrison, and the Saint.

Hey, and we got a little more development on the upcoming straight-to-DVD Wonder Woman animated movie.

It was announced this morning that Nathan Fillion will be doing the voice of Steve Trevor.

For those who don't read Wonder Woman, Steve Trevor has been called "the Lois Lane to Wonder Woman's Superman." Steve Trevor is an Air Force pilot who's all hot for Wonder Woman, is always getting kidnapped by supervillains, and Wonder Woman always has to save him.

For those who aren't geeks, Fillion is still best-known as Captain Malcolm Reynolds in Joss Whedon's epic Firefly. And he's from Edmonton!

It was already announced that Keri Russel is doing the voice of Wonder Woman. In an interesting coincidence, Russel and Fillion played a couple in last year's hit indie romantic comedy Waitress.

The Wonder Woman straight-to-DVD animated movie should be out around this time in 2009.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

The Greatest News Story I've Ever Written

This is my actual lead story from my newscast on Monday, February 5. I can't believe I wrote. Well, I can believe I wrote it. I can't actually believe I read it. But the act brightened my day, and I hope it brightens yours.


The head of Athabasca Dick has been found. The head of the Magnificent River Rats festival mascot was stolen shortly after the festival back in July. The head was recently recovered in the woods next to Edwin Parr Composite. The head is now at the dry cleaners, being repaired. The search now continues for Athabasca Dick's pants.

Athabasca Dick's pants went missing shortly before last year's festival.

If you're wondering why the mascot is named Athabasca Dick, it's because Robert Service wrote a poem about Athabasca and it's called...Athabasca Dick.

Find out everything about this year's festival at The Magnificent River Rats official website.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Trailer Park

What better way to start Monday than with a slew of movie trailers?

First up, here's the Super Bowl commercial for Iron Man. This movie is looking to be 7 different kinds of awesome.

Next up, here's the Super Bowl commercial for Pixar's latest, WALL-E. Ah, Woody and Buzz. Are they as timeless as Pixar would have us believe?

And finally, for those who haven't seen it yet, here's the trailer for the next Star Trek movie.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Latest Targ's Up!

Who's in the mood for a new podcast?

This week's episode of The Targ is up! this week, I have for you Episode 84: Brain Freeze, where I whine about my car not starting in this cold, rave about Weird Al's latest cameo on The Simpsons, and tell you about the brief, fleeting moment I was a football hero.

Listen to it!

Friday, February 01, 2008

The Polanski Tapes

I try not to talk about work or a lot of the news stories I cover at this blog, mainly because I don't know who all reads this and I don't know who I'm going to offend if I get...opinionated. But there's something that came up at Athabasca County council the other day that caught my ear, and I have to spout off on it. Mainly because it connects with one of my favourite things: movies.

Ed Polanski is a former mayor of Athabasca. When he was done being mayor, he moved into the big city of Edmonton, started working for one of the TV stations there, and eventually became a relatively big TV exec. However, his heart was still in Athabasca. He'd frequently return to Athabasca with a film crew, film the town, and interview the locals. He even spent a lot of his own personal money to obtain rare, archival film footage of Athabasca from long, long ago. His goal was to create a thorough and comprehensive documentary on Athabasca. Sadly, Mr. Polanski suffered a rather debilitating stroke a few years back, and the dream kind of died that day.

However, Athabasca knew that this footage and film that Mr. Polanski had acquired would be a valuable historical resource. So, the Town of Athabasca, Athabasca County, and Athabasca University each put up $25,000 (for a total of $75,000) to acquire these Polanski tapes and develop it into some kind of DVD about the town. Well, they spent $10,000 to get the footage, and...that's all they did.

The Polanski Tapes have spent the past 3 years in a cardboard box in the back of town office.

As always, it takes a change in government to get things moving again. Athabasca's new mayor felt that something had to be done. So, the Polanski Tapes are going to be donated to the Athabasca University archives, where, at the very least, they'll be properly stored.

But when all this came to light at the last Athabasca County council meeting, I almost shed a tear. My God! All this archival footage of one town? Amazing!

Seriously, now that it's going to be put away in the Athabasca University archives and pretty much made freely available to the public, now's the time. Someone get a hold of the CBC! Or that National Film Board! Right here is the perfect opportunity for some documentary filmmaker to make an absolutely kick-ass film about Athabasca!

Some filmmaker has to get their hands on this footage and finish Polanski's documentary.